OIG: CFPB’s Internal Complaint-Sharing Tools Effective, but Concerns Over Protecting Sensitive Data

The Office of Inspector General (OIG) published a report on June 3, 2019, reviewing how the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB or Bureau) shares consumer complaint data internally and generally found that the CFPB’s Office of Consumer Response is effective at this task. The CFPB shares consumer complaint data through certain analytical tools (see the insideARM Perspective below for more information), which the Bureau’s divisions use to inform their work.

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While the report gives a positive review of the Bureau’s complaint sharing efforts, one area of concern noted by the OIG is protecting sensitive consumer data while sharing these complaints. When consumers file CFPB complaints, they often include personal and sensitive information. According to the report’s summary, “Consumer Response inconsistently approved access to two complaint-sharing tools and did not assess whether users needed continued access to one tool or to network drive folders containing complaint reports.”

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